Rabies is a very serious disease that gives rise to
difficulty in swallowing, convulsions and death. It results from the
bite of an infected animal like a dog, a cat, a monkey, a bat or
a fox. Bites from all these animals should be taken seriously
and the following steps should be undertaken.
1: Tie the
animal up if possible for close observation for a period of 10 days. If the
animal is healthy after this period, there is no cause for
concern. This is true of a cat or a dog. But a bite from a wild
animal like a bat or a fox should be taken very seriously. If
it is possible, such a wild animal is to be killed
immediately and its brain examined to see if it is infected with the rabies virus.
Step 2: If
the wound is bleeding, check the bleeding by firm, constant pressure. Then
wash the site with soap and water for at least 10 minutes.
This is the most important.
Step 3: Contact
your doctor immediately. In the meanwhile, check if the pet animal has been
immunised or not.
Step 4: Your
doctor may ask certain questions. For example, did the pet dog or cat bite the
child under provocation? Was it a direct bite or through the
clothes? Which portion of the body was bitten? What is the immunisation status of the pet animal? If the bite is
from a wild animal, your doctor is likely to give preventive injections for tetanus as well as for rabies. In the
case of pet animals, he may decide, depending on the answers to the above questions,
whether to start the injections straightaway or to wait for a few days while the animal
is under observation.
Prevention Of Dog Bite
Educate your child not to provoke a dog. Teach him not
to touch puppies in the presence of their mother; not to
run when he sees an unfamiliar dog; and not to disturb a dog
that is eating or sleeping.
7 March, 2016